Joining IL National Guard: Med Program Advice or provide contacts i can reach

Coonman21

10+ Year Member
Dec 2, 2008
1
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Looking up information on military medical programs has been a little challenging and its a relief finding people like you who are willing to help out people like me looking to serve this great country. So up front: THANK YOU so much! What army job would provide me with the best training for pursuing a medical career as a doctor? and what progam options do i have; ASR? ADSW? HPSP? and what should i ask for and have in my contract when enlisting?

below is some personal information if you care to know or help assist you in your response

Any infomation or any helpful contacts you may have (especially those familiar with IL National Guard) I would highly appreciate. If you have any questions for me please email me [email protected]
Since I was about 16 i've wanted to enlist but i agreed to my parents i would try the college thing first. Well i'm all grown up now and my desire to serve is greater than ever (going to war to help my fellow man would be amazing and good training if i go the ER or surgery route) and in 6 days i an recieving an Associates Degree in Sciences. I'm in great physical shape, mentally feel prepared, so no worries about bootcamp....but it's what comes after boot where i have major questions. I'm starting the recruiting process soon and i will be talking to Air Force, Marines, and Army but i strongly favor the NG right now; just keeping my options open since my grades and ACT are good and the ASFAT should go great. Not only is my fiancee in the IL NG and is currently serving in Afghanistan, the IL NG seems to offer the best flexible option to pay for Med School. And by flexible (being able to move is a good thing) all i really want is a way to pay for med school and be nondeployable while in med school and residency while living a fairly flexible civilian life. I would like to be in boot by February but I may postpone boot in order to ensure that my job training will complete a month after my fiancee gets back from her tour around August 09 (according to what my fiancee has heard through the grapevine, her tour is being replaced by another Illinois NG tour and after that IL shouldnt deploy for a few years; i know you cant predict military action but anything to improve my chances of getting into Med School sooner than later is ideal since i have boot and training and 2 more years of college before medschool; i would like to be in residency by the time i'm 30).
 

EMH

ARNG - MC
10+ Year Member
Aug 16, 2005
765
5
42
Arkansas
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Attending Physician
I think I may be a little under qualified to answer your question but I can comment on a few things I know. There are a lot of options once you have been accepted to a med school. But before you're accepted, the HPSP & ASR (ADSW) in the NG aren't options. I suppose you know, but most med schools are going to require a bachelors. I would recommend getting with a pre-med advisor and finding out what classes and a time line so you know how much more college you'll need to do.

As far as options to join while in college and be assured that you won't be deployed while you finish undergrad I'd be cautious. There's a few things I've heard of like the college first deal with the NG, the ROTC maybe. I just wouldn't know if once you got into school if these obligations would be able to be switched to an HPSP or a protected slot in the NG. From the sound of it you sound like you'd love to attend USUHS. I'd try to get ahold of someone in admissions there and ask some questions about what your options are.

GL to you.
 

EMH

ARNG - MC
10+ Year Member
Aug 16, 2005
765
5
42
Arkansas
Status
Attending Physician
Here's a quote from the USUHS FAQ online.

5. I am already in the military, what about me?

Military applicants compete with civilian applicants on the same level. However, there are two considerations which set them apart. First, if you are on active duty, in one of the military academies, or the ROTC, you must obtain a Letter of Approval (LOA) to apply from your branch of service. See Military Contact Offices.

Remember, the LOA must clearly state that approval is granted. The letter should not say "recommends approval." It should state "has approval."

For those in the reserves, a letter from your commanding officer (who has the authority to release you) will suffice for the LOA. Those in the IRR do not need the LOA.

Secondly, active duty and other military obligates, are restricted when selecting a branch of service. Civilians may choose from the three services offered (Air Force, Navy and Army). Active duty applicants must comply with their LOA instructions. Note: it is rare that a component will give permission to transfer into another component. If such permission is not given, the applicant must enter the same component they currently serve in. For military applicants concerned about the status of pay and retirement, please see Entitlements

Additionally, having prior or current military involvement would indicate to the Committee that an applicant has made a commitment to a military career. However, this will not compensate for poor scholarship or inadequate academic performance. To be admitted to the F. Edward H�bert School of Medicine, one must be a competitive candidate for medical school.
 
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notdeadyet

Still in California
Moderator
15+ Year Member
Jul 23, 2004
11,772
1,946
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Attending Physician
Without a doubt, the best way to keep the most open options in terms of your medical and military career is to get to the point of starting medical school with no other obligations, military or otherwise.

By your mention of your AA, I'm assuming that you are coming from a community college, so your debt is probably a lot less than most. If you are going to attend a state school (a good idea for med school) for your BA, you will have minimal debt. I'd recommend doing so without any military obligations. Then, when you apply to medical school, you can apply for HPSP, UHUHS, ASR, HSCP or wait to apply to FAP without any problems.

Also (and this is a biggie), if you find your career path changes (pretty common during you last two years of college, you won't find yourself with obligations to a contract that may or may not suit your particular career needs.
 

amindwalker

Forgetful omniscient
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Feb 19, 2007
340
2
LECOM-Hoth, class of 2010, baby!
Status
Medical Student
Once you have an acceptance letter in hand, any of us (EMH, notdeadyet, iatrosB, or yours truly) can and will hook you up well. Until then, I must concur with my fellow officers and recommend ROTC or nothing until after you get your BA or BS degree. Have you completed Orgo yet?
 

notdeadyet

Still in California
Moderator
15+ Year Member
Jul 23, 2004
11,772
1,946
Status
Attending Physician
Have you completed Orgo yet?
Ah, yes, one year of a course in which the content that you'll use in med school can be taught in an afternoon...

By the way, Coonman21, I'd recommend that you get folks to PM you, rather than email you. Posting your email account there as you do allows spiders that scour forums to scrape up your email address and send it to loads of spam companies.

When you need SDN folks to contact you, most folks are more comfortable using PM anyway, as it keeps things safe and anonymous until we get to know you.

Best of luck in your studies...
 
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